The word challenge seems like it's become a buzzword. You're supposed to seek out new challenges and make sure you stay challenged in your professional and personal life. If you're not being challenged, if you're not somehow toiling to overcome a new obstacle or master a new skill, you're going to be bored and won't grow.
I can see the logic of that and agree with it. Just not entirely.
Because I can also see how a person could glorify challenges to the point that they're no longer stopping to celebrate and enjoy where they're at and what they've achieved. That they need a little fight, a little grit to feel what they're doing is valid. That they need the adrenaline of a challenge to feel alive.
That seems a bit manic and not very mindful to me.
I wonder what would happen if we were better at embracing the inherent flow of life. What if recognized that the rhythm of work and rest isn't established only by the calendar? There will be times in our jobs and in our lives that will be busier and harder than others, just as there will be times that are slower and easier. Often, when we forget that (or don't recognize it in the first place), we work against the rhythm by trying to manufacture one state when we're in the other one.
Of course, if it feels like you've been in one of these states for an extended period of time, you might need to adjust your vision. Perhaps you haven't been observant or curious enough to recognize opportunities to climb up the next hill or coast down it. I don't think flow means dropping out. I think it means being actively aware while also being accepting. Being content without being stagnant. Desiring more, yet still loving with what you have.
Achieving that balance isn't simple, for sure, but I see it as a much more worthy challenge than those we'd drum up just to prove we're still relevant.
Opinions shared here are my own. They should not be seen as a representation of my employer's views.